Question

Trying to reach across a property, to an outdoor veranda/guest house. Hoping a dual-boost setup can bridge the gap.

  • 3 September 2017
  • 10 replies
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Not a super "advanced" scenario, but... My mom has a largish property with a multi-room Sonos setup inside the main house, using her existing WiFi (Apple). Works fine. But she has a veranda area where people cook&dine. Bought a Play:3 for this area that she can bust out whenever she uses the space. But the existing WiFi doesn't reliably make it that far (approx 20-25 meters). Considering segregating her house Sonos network onto a Boost (get it off the Apple), and placing another Boost out with the Play:3. Will the 2nd Boost help bridge the gap using mesh overlap between the Boosts? Or will the Boost and the Play:3 already be attempting the same thing the same way. Essentially wondering if the Boost units have more oomph in the mesh than the other Sonos units do.

Thanks in advance!

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10 replies

Boost does have more oomph but not sure that is the issue here and a second Boost should be positioned in between speakers not alongside them if needed at all. What Sonos components are in the system and where are they located?
Thanks, John. The house system is essentially 5 Connects tied to legacy home system (used to be some nasty Crestron mess). All those units are grouped together near the legacy equipment ina Great Room that is 20-25 meters from the outdoor veranda. The existing Apple and cable routers are a little further away in a utility closet.
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If the house came with Crestron, chances are there's a CAT5 cable somewhere to that veranda area. Crestron systems are closed to you messing with them, requiring certified integrators to work on them (which is why they end up as a mess, they require periodic upgrades and maintenance at five figure price tags), but they all use CAT5/6 backhaul all over the place.

Connect a switch to that cable, then run a another WAP off of it. Oh, and do yourself a favor, and get something more modern than an Apple router for that size of property. Preferably a stand-alone router and a couple of WAPs, but the Apple equipment, as a router, was mediocre even when it was new and hasn't gotten any better with age. The existing Apple AirPort can be used as a wireless access point still.

If you don't have that, I'd recommend that you go ahead and bury a cable - direct burial CAT6 is pretty cheap, usually cheaper than a Sonos Boost for that sort of run length. Besides Sonos, you then get WiFi out there. 🙂
As a first experiment, i suggest you disconnect one of the Connects from its amp and connect it to the router by Ethernet. Wait a few minutes. Power off and back on the other Connects. (I am assuming that currently no component wired. We are using the Connect to put the system into Boost mode.

Check in 'About my Sonos system' and every Connect should have WM:0 next to it, indicating Boost mode.

See if the P:3 will now connect and please post back.
If the house came with Crestron, chances are there's a CAT5 cable somewhere to that veranda area.

I wish. But there is no documented/discoverable CAT run. The veranda is a completely detached structure that came later, so it makes sense there is no run.

I agree that hard-wiring would be the way to go, if it were my home and I was planning on staying. But house is on the block and could sell in a month, or in a year. So no digging through pristine landscape with an in-ground irrigation maze in the mix.

And since all the Sonos gear will go with her when she moves, I'm hoping for a fully wireless fix to tide her over.
Cool idea. I'll try that next time I'm up there. Hopefully next weekend.

As a first experiment, i suggest you disconnect one of the Connects from its amp and connect it to the router by Ethernet. Wait a few minutes. Power off and back on the other Connects. (I am assuming that currently no component wired. We are using the Connect to put the system into Boost mode.

Check in 'About my Sonos system' and every Connect should have WM:0 next to it, indicating Boost mode.

See if the P:3 will now connect and please post back.
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Well then, if a pure Sonos rig doesn't work out, try out Hawking wireless gear. You can get a high gain WAP and directional antenna. 🙂
If my suggestion doesn't do the trick, the next step would be to put another Connect half-way between the currently closest Connect and the P:3. We are trying to exploit the mesh networking capacity of SonosNet here, by imitating (approximately) the "two Boost" solution you were thinking about. If it works it may be worth getting one or two Boosts.

If even that doesn't work, @jce6613 has given you some viable alternatives. Also, his suggestions provide a wifi signal, which may be needed to connect a controller to the system. Android controllers can connect to SonosNet, so it depends what your mother uses for a controller device.
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Greetings rtbarry, I just wanted to reach out and touch base on this. Any luck with the PLAY:3 working reliably in the veranda area?

John B's recommendation is a great way to determine if a BOOST would help. This FAQ article gives a good visual representation of his suggestion to put the 2nd BOOST (if this is even necessary) between the first-wired unit (whichever player or BOOST is wired to the network) and the PLAY:3 to extend the mesh network: Choosing between a Standard and BOOST Setup.

Hopefully everything is running smoothly at this point, but feel free to submit a diagnostic and reply with the confirmation number so we can take a look.
Hi all!
We actually just "went for it" and put the Play:3 out on the veranda and it seems to be working flawlessly, just connecting to the existing in-home network. Thanks for all the input, and sorry I didn't provide closure sooner.

Cheers 🙂